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  1. #1
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    Patriots HOF Finalists: Bledsoe, Parcells, and Antwine

    Two central figures in reviving hope with New England Patriots fans in the 1990s are finalists for induction into the team’s Hall of Fame this year, while one of the great defensive linemen from the club’s American Football League years rounds out the ballot.

    Quarterback Drew Bledsoe (1993-2001), head coach Bill Parcells (1993-1996) and defensive lineman Houston Antwine (1961-71) are the 2011 finalists.

    One of them, selected in a month-long fan vote on Patriots.com, will become the 18th member of the Hall of Fame, joining center Jon Morris (1964-74), who was voted in this year by the newly formed Senior Committee.

    Bledsoe and Parcells are in their first year of eligibility. Antwine is a finalist for the third year in a row.

    Bledsoe was the No. 1 overall draft choice in 1993, a selection that gave the Patriots a franchise quarterback to build around. By his second season in 1994, Bledsoe had set the franchise’s single-season record for passing yards. His 691 pass attempts in 1994 remain an NFL record.

    While Bledsoe No. 11 jerseys became fashionable in New England at the time, excitement had already been building because of the hiring of Parcells in 1993, as he brought instant credibility to a franchise that had been reeling. Parcells would become the first coach to be inducted into the Patriots Hall of Fame, which currently consists of 15 players and one contributor (Billy Sullivan).

    While both Bledsoe and Parcells were instrumental in the Patriots’ resurgence, they didn’t have storybook endings with the franchise. Bledsoe was ultimately replaced by Tom Brady, and Parcells bolted after leading the team to the Super Bowl in his fourth season.

    Antwine is a member of the Patriots’ 50th anniversary team, 35th anniversary team and 1960s all-decade team, and was voted to six all-star games. He totaled 39 sacks over his career and was selected to the all-time AFL All-League team.
    ESPN Boston

    A few days old, but thought I would touch on this. I think most of us remember the days of watching Bledsoe and thinking he would be the one to take us to the promised land, but he still remains one of my favorite players of all time nonetheless. I still have my ratty youth sized Bledsoe jersey somewhere in my closet, so I'm glad he's getting recognition as a great Patriot. Hopefully he gets the nod.
    Patriots Forum Hall of Fame Class of 2011


  2. #2
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    Bledsoe talks about Patriots Hall of Fame Recognition
    Former Patriots quarterback Drew Bledsoe on Friday was announced as one of three finalists for this year’s selection to the Patriots’ Hall of Fame. Fan voting for the honor runs through May 15.

    In a conference call with reporters this afternoon, Bledsoe called his nomination “a great honor” and praised Patriots fans for being “so supportive and passionate.”

    When asked about his most memorable moments of his nine-year career with the Patriots, the 39-year old Bledsoe recalled the “overwhelming welcome” he received after being drafted in 1993.

    Replacing injured starter Tom Brady late in the first half of the January 2002 AFC Championship game, Bledsoe said winning that game to reach Super Bowl XXXVI was another memory that “will always stick with him.”

    It would turn out to be Bledsoe’s last season in New England, but the retired quarterback said he “felt during [his] time [with the Patriots], the organization went from one place to a much better place.”

    “I’m certainly very proud to be part of that resurgence of the Patriots,” Bledsoe continued. “But I also take some degree of pride in seeing where they’ve gone since.”

    Bledsoe said that while he maintains the strongest ties with former offensive lineman Todd Rucci, he also connects with Brady on occasion.

    “Obviously, he’s been one of the best players in the league for a number of years now on the field,” Bledsoe said of Brady. “[But] the way he’s been able to conduct himself with a level of class on and off the field, I’ve been proud of that.”

    Since retiring four years ago, Bledsoe has stayed busy, saying that he’s “never had a day that I’ve had to figure out what I’m going to do.”

    In addition to running a successful winery, Bledsoe said he is part of small private equity group that invests in clean energy projects. The work keeps him busy but allows him to form his own schedule, which recently included coaching his town's third- and fourth-grade flag football team to an undefeated record last season.

    Even with a full schedule in his post-playing career, Bledsoe admitted that he still has the itch to play.

    “I will always have the desire to get back out there,” he said.
    ESPN Boston
    Good stuff from Bledsoe
    Last edited by BradyIsTheMan12; 04-19-2011 at 02:48 AM.
    Patriots Forum Hall of Fame Class of 2011


  3. #3
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    Parcells comments on Pats Hall of Fame Recognition
    In a conference call this morning, Bill Parcells expressed surprise at being a finalist for the Patriots Hall of Fame, while at the same time expressing regret for "domestic misunderstandings" with owner Robert Kraft.

    Parcells was unaware that the Patriots had a Hall of Fame and said he feels "very flattered to be considered", as he a finalist this year along with Drew Bledsoe and Houston Antwine (voting is ongoing on Patriots.com).

    In a 30-minute conference call, Parcells took reporters back to his four-year tenure as head coach (1993-1996) while also mentioning his one year as linebackers coach in 1980. The most revealing part of the call came when he was asked about any regrets he had from his time as head coach.

    "As you know, we had a couple domestic misunderstandings with ownership I do regret," he said. "Those things since have been resolved. I think retrospectively, I would have handled things substantially different than I did. I was always saddened by the fact I had to leave there. In all honesty, I really didn't want to. I'm sure Bob [Kraft] would say something along those lines. We have talked about that. ... I did regret that. That's life -- you learn from things as you go on."

    Since that time, Parcells and Kraft have spoken about that time in their NFL lives -- Parcells in his second head coaching stint, and Kraft in his initial years as owner.

    “I don’t know there was any definitive time. We just kind of ran into each other a few times," Parcells said. "You know, you can’t help but talk things over a little bit. We never had a lengthy conversation about it. Certainly I know, I would have probably handled things differently."

    Parcells gave Kraft a compliment when reflecting on his time in New England.

    "I remember going there and in all honesty the franchise, I don't want to use the word disarray, but certainly unsettled; ownership was unsettled," Parcells said. "I do feel that when Robert Kraft took over the team that was a major step for stability for the franchise and the Patriots themselves."
    ESPN Boston

    Though it didn't end up working out, Parcells was a key component in getting the franchise back on track, but I don't know about him being in the Pats Hall of Fame just yet.
    Patriots Forum Hall of Fame Class of 2011


  4. #4
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    Antwine was one of the few bright spots in the second half of the 60's when I started to watch. Worthy, but maybe not quite enough.

    Bledsoe of course saved the franchise w/o any doubt in my mind. The fact that he didn't get us a SB win, ought not to weigh against him too much for the Pats HOF, for the real HOF, forget it.

    Parcells is of course going to the real HOF, but he stained himself here IMO. He left like Chuck Fairbanks left. He later screwed us out of our best ever RB since Jim Nance at least, and tried to chain BB to NYJ so he could claim more credit for what BB did, which is win SB's and let the blow hard Parcells get the credit.
    I am not a con artist! I am a businessman! I have a big brain and I'm good at making deals! People are just jealous of my BIG BRAIN! BAD!

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  5. #5
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    Ahh Bledsoe... I still have my old #11 jersey in my closet.

    The good o'l days of watching NFL with my old man (R.I.P) and adopting my first team after watching Bledsoe play.

    Good luck Drew! Thanks for the memories.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by bradyistheman12 View Post
    ESPN Boston

    A few days old, but thought I would touch on this. I think most of us remember the days of watching Bledsoe and thinking he would be the one to take us to the promised land, but he still remains one of my favorite players of all time nonetheless. I still have my ratty youth sized Bledsoe jersey somewhere in my closet, so I'm glad he's getting recognition as a great Patriot. Hopefully he gets the nod.
    he got my nod .

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